Steve Benen (@stevebenen) February 27, 2015
Yeah. Sounds about right.
Right off the bat, the notion that the president wouldn’t go after ISIS because he “doesn’t want to upset Iran” is bizarre – ISIS and Iran are enemies. Tehran is more than happy to see U.S. forces go after ISIS targets; in fact, Iran has done the same thing. When it comes to the terrorist group, Americans and Iranians are on the same side. How could Rubio not know this?
For that matter, the argument that Obama “hasn’t put in place a military strategy to defeat ISIS” is plainly untrue. Rubio should know this, not only because he’s a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and an unannounced presidential candidate, but also because Obama’s strategy to defeat ISIS is largely identical to Marco Rubio’s.
The senator fleshed this out at CPAC: target ISIS by using local ground forces, coupled with air support from the United States, all while U.S. officials take the lead in assembling an international coalition.
That, as of this morning, is Rubio’s plan. It’s also exactly what Obama has been doing since August.
The obvious question: Is this really what counts as presidential timbre among Republicans?
It is one thing to attempt the false equivalence that both the major parties are pretty much the same, but on an occasion when there is, in fact, policy overlap, does it really count for nothing that one of the parties is incapable of perceiving that overlap?
Benen, Steve. “Rubio agrees with Obama’s ISIS strategy”. Twitter. 27 February 2015.
—————. “Rubio blasts ISIS strategy he supports”. msnbc. 27 February 2015.